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The district of Kailahun, in eastern Sierra Leone bordering Guinea, is home to the largest Ebola treatment and isolation centre ever erected. Photo credits: EU/ECHO/Cyprien Fabre
“Ebola cases in West Africa are on the rise again. For the first time this year, we saw an increase in new infections in the week to 1 February – with 124 new confirmed cases across Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia. This is very worrying.
The increase does not by itself mean that the disease is once again getting out of control. Some of the increase may be explained by a better capacity to identify new cases, following the big surge in the effort to respond to Ebola at the end of 2014. And yet, we cannot let down our guard.
Huge progress has been made in the fight against Ebola. But we must maintain the concerted push, with the affected countries and the entire international community, to isolate and treat every case and trace every contact. Ebola will only be defeated once case numbers are down to zero in each of the affected countries.
The EU is doing its part: with €1.2 billion in assistance; with medical teams, laboratories and epidemiologists on the ground; with massive support to the development of an effective vaccine. And on 3 March 2015, together with our African partners and the United Nations, we are organizing a major international conference on Ebola – to make sure we are all doing everything we can to bring cases down to zero, and to put in place a recovery strategy for the three affected countries.”